Before Ava’s arrival, if I needed to do something- I’d sit down and do it. At any time of the day. Now, I feel like I have to squeeze everything in that precious two hour window when she naps. That could entail anything from doing the laundry so that I have enough pants for the rest of the week, life admin like calls to the dentist/GP/bank, to making sure the house isn’t in a state, to feeding myself, slapping on some makeup so I only look a little dishevelled instead of completely, and yes even going to the loo. Today, however- I need to squeeze in the little task of editing some wedding photos I second shot a couple of weeks ago. There are around 1000 photos to go through. There is a cup of tea, a bag of squirrel food, a bag of duck food (all for our trips to the park) a packet of melty puffs and the baby monitor by my side. If that doesn’t depict a working mum experience, then I don’t know what does.
And actually, I feel like I can’t even say ‘working mum’ yet. I’m just trying to get my photography portfolio bumped out a little more so that I can get more work eventually. It’s so awkward when people ask me when I’m going back to work and then I have to tell them a long story about my job disappearing when I was 8 weeks pregnant.
You’d be surprised just how much you can get done during a two hour window nap though. If we’re lucky, I get another hour later in the afternoon but that 2 hours in the morning? That’s the golden time! I simultaneously look forward and dread the day she goes to nursery (date unknown; we’re currently on 4 waiting lists, 2 years long!!) because yes I always want her by my side, tucked safely under my wing and yet I’m also yearning for some independence for myself. I miss being able to just go out to do something, just for an hour or two but then when that feeling kicks in so does the mum guilt that I want to be on my own for a bit. But being a 24/7 on call Mama is tough! For now, this two hour window, it’s what I’ve got to work with.5